Jabber is the technical name for something that we all use every day online, on our cell phones.  It is the original open source software program that enables us all to instantly message our friends, coworkers, and family anytime we want and anywhere we happen to be.

Cisco Systems acquired the technology in 2008.  Since then, MSN, ICQ, AOL messenger, IRC and the well know Facebook messenger have all come into the market.

These messenger services are free to use as long as you are a member of their particular website.  Take Facebook messenger for example.  When you log into Facebook you can see which of your friends are logged into Facebook and which ones are not.

Lately Facebook has also added the capability to see how long your friends have been inactive on Facebook or if they are connected passively through a mobile device and even if they are logged in from a mobile device.

This has caused a lot of controversy though.  The problem stems from being able to tell if someone is online or on a mobile device. People had concerns at first that if their account status said that they were on a mobile device then people would be able to tell that no one was at home and that would make them vulnerable to being robbed.

This was not the case.  Even if your account said that you were on a mobile device it doesn’t mean that you are not at home.  Another issue closely related to this one is that when a message is sent from one user to another using a mobile device.  The message will show where the message was sent from.  For instance the message says sent from, and then the name of the town or city where the user sent the message from.

Facebook had to fix this issue by adding security settings which allows the user to turn off this added information.  This ensures that no one falls victim to a burglary because their message states that they are not at home.